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IRS Says Worker Had Hand in Cookie Jar

MANHATTAN (CN) - A longtime IRS officer is accused of stealing more than $160,000 in unclaimed tax refunds. Federal prosecutors say Fern Stephens, an IRS employee since 1984, used government computers to send refunds, often due to small businesses, to "eight family members and associates."

Stephens ran her game for nearly 8 years, according to the 3-count indictment. She is charged with mail fraud, theft of public money and computer fraud. If convicted of all three, she could face up to 35 years in prison.

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